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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2012, Article ID 484390, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1100/2012/484390
Research Article

Crop Row Detection in Maize Fields Inspired on the Human Visual Perception

1Department of Software Engineering and Artificial Intelligence, Faculty of Informatics, University Complutense, 28040 Madrid, Spain
2Department of Computer Architecture and Automatic, Faculty of Informatics, University Complutense, 28040 Madrid, Spain
3Artificial Perception Group, Center for Automation and Robotics (CAR), CSIC-UPM, 28500, Arganda del Rey, Madrid, Spain

Received 14 October 2011; Accepted 28 November 2011

Academic Editors: C. Dell and A. Garcia y Garcia

Copyright © 2012 J. Romeo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

This paper proposes a new method, oriented to image real-time processing, for identifying crop rows in maize fields in the images. The vision system is designed to be installed onboard a mobile agricultural vehicle, that is, submitted to gyros, vibrations, and undesired movements. The images are captured under image perspective, being affected by the above undesired effects. The image processing consists of two main processes: image segmentation and crop row detection. The first one applies a threshold to separate green plants or pixels (crops and weeds) from the rest (soil, stones, and others). It is based on a fuzzy clustering process, which allows obtaining the threshold to be applied during the normal operation process. The crop row detection applies a method based on image perspective projection that searches for maximum accumulation of segmented green pixels along straight alignments. They determine the expected crop lines in the images. The method is robust enough to work under the above-mentioned undesired effects. It is favorably compared against the well-tested Hough transformation for line detection.